My local art/tech high school recently got a donation of about a dozen HTC Vives with the intention of letting the kids use Tilt Brush. However the Vives didn't come with PCs and the school only has iMacs and 13" MacBook Pros that don't have the necessary GPU power. I somehow ended up in a situation where I agreed to buy/build them PCs to go with the headsets. The computers only need to be able to run Tilt Brush, other more demanding VR titles aren't a consideration. Future proofing is worth considering, but only if it doesn't come at a significant financial cost. They might also be used for adobe stuff, programming, and general purpose computing in the future but that should presumably be fine either way. I'm located in the UK.
The budget is extremely tight. Buying from Dell or similar isn't an option unless there is an education/corporate offer that is cheaper than self building, but from my experience those types of systems don't come with beefy GPUs. My time for building them isn't an issue. I hate giving a school PCs that don't have corporate tech support, but I think that's what the situation is.
So far, here's where I am:
MiniITX or Shuttle cases (do those still exist?) would be great. Or anything with handles that can be carried/transported fairly easily.
6th gen i5 of some sort (would it be possible to scrape by on a cheaper AMD solution?)
GTX 1060 (would 1050Ti's do the job?) I'm open to AMD GPUs but based on a quick look the current prices seem too high compared to nVidia for equivalent VR performance. The GPU needs to have two HDMI ports as all their monitors are HDMI and same for the Vive.
256GB SSD (maybe 128GB would be ok? I have no idea how big Tilt Brush files are)
They need a PCIe WiFi card unless the MoBo has built-in WiFi. Their network is 802.11n.
Keyboards/Mice/Monitors are not necessary as they have a bunch of 24" HPs and generic mice/keyboards in storage
Same with Windows Licenses as they have access to a volume license.
An added bonus would be if the PCs would be compatible with drawing apps on Windows Mixed Reality headsets in the future, but from what I've seen the minimum specs on those are lower than the ones for the Vive, so hopefully these systems would be able to cover that either way.
I will also be buying them one laptop to take their VR projects on the road, so far from what I've seen I'd expect a "gaming" laptop with a 1060 to cost around £1000. Any recommendations for a well priced laptop that meets the specs and doesn't look to gamer-y? A more corporate Dell workstation type look would be preferred, but again price is the main consideration.
Thanks for the help.